Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Week 2

Hey there,

I have just finished my first school day here at ISB with students and they are absolutely wonderful! I was so nervous last night! More nervous than I ever remember being before a first day of school. But I’ll get to all that in a minute – let me tell you about the adventures of last week.

Last Monday all of the other teachers came back from the summer. It was a little intimidating at first but already I have met several of them, all very nice. Monday and Tuesday were busy with meetings and classroom time. On Tuesday afternoon I went to a coaches meeting because I was told I would have to interview for the asst. varsity position. On Wednesday I had the interview and I think the season (I got the job!) will be different than anything I have experienced before. The head coach said the girls are inexperienced somewhat but that he enjoys the season tons. We will actually play several teams from other international schools as the local teams are too … well, he says he plays one or two of them at the beginning of the season to better his team. He said these girls actually go to school for basketball – I would have loved that! They don’t even use a girls ball and refuse to play with one as well. I can’t wait to see them play!

On Wednesday night I went out with about 40 of the teachers to a bar called Public Space for drinks and then on to a restaurant called The Tree. The food at the The Tree was delicious – pizza, better than most I’ve had in the states. Afterwards we went to a dance club called Destinations where we stayed longer than we should have on a school night – well, I thought so anyways. But it was so much fun seeing all these teachers get down. When I said later that was fun but I won’t be back once the students start coming they were laughing at me – I don’t know where they get the energy!

On Thursday I woke up to an extremely smoky sky and the pollution was so thick I could taste it. It brought me back to my childhood as I quickly recalled the smell of pollution in Louisville. One of my 9th graders proudly told me today that living in Beijing and breathing is equal to smoking two packs of cigarettes a day… nice! It hasn’t let up since – you can actually see it in the school all the way down the hallway!

On Friday we all went to a new bar (the entire faculty) that has just been opened by two of the teachers here. It is a “sports” bar (everyone was watching cricket) called Pomegranate in the village between school and the compound. Even the director was there sipping a beer. Afterwards, Jeff and Tammy, one of the new teachers and his wife, through a party at their house. It was fun but I didn’t stay long – I had been looking forward to a good night’s sleep and I had work to do at the school on Saturday. Saturday night we went downtown to an Indian restaurant – my first Indian food and I like it a lot. Didn’t think I would like it at all. Afterwards we went to Barblu for more dancing but for me again – an early night. Yesterday I went into town with Bebe to go to the pearl market. That was a trip. I feel like I am learning my way around the city quite nicely and soon may even be ready to go somewhere by MYSELF! Well, I’m not going to rush it or anything… ;-)

Last night I found myself extremely nervous. I was almost pacing in my apartment and seriously felt like I was about to have a meltdown. And then I remembered to pray. And I prayed for almost an hour and afterwards I felt completely calm and relaxed. And I started thinking about how good God is. I have been so busy this past week, learning more about Beijing, my job, meeting people. And just when I need him, he is there, listening to my every word and need. This morning when I ready my Daily Light, the verse was “The God of peace…make you complete in every good work to do His will.” Hebrews 13:20-21. And I got so excited about school. And my students coming. The morning and afternoon went smoothly – I only had two classes today. But my students are delightful. They were all asking who the kicker was in the picture by my computer so I very proudly told them all about my precious baby brother!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m missing you all and hope you are all well. For now, I’m back to work. I’ll try to update on Sundays. Missin ya’ll!!!!!!!!! J


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